Fat Pugs: Discover all of their Causes and Consequences!

Avoid Fat Pugs – Why?

Most unaware Pug owners have a Fat Pugs, and we don’t blame you if you were not properly educated about their needs. However, only you have the power to change this fact. If you’re worried about your Fat Pug’s weight, you came to the right place.

Why should you care about your Pug’s weight?

Reason # 1 – It’s hard to make them lean again

If you’re worried about your Fat Pug, you likely tried to take this into your hands. However, this can be a very difficult task if not done properly.

Reason # 2 – It’s dangerous to try this without guidance

Trying to keep your Pug lean without using the right methods can worsen the issue. They can rebound just as humans can! Additionally, neglecting vital nutrients and vitamins is directly detrimental to their health in the short and long term.

Reason # 3 – The right tips are easy to follow

Even though it’s hard and dangerous to do this without proper guidance, said guidance and guidelines are not hard to follow. This can save you from improvising, hurting your dog, and a lot of money on fad diets for dogs – yes, they exist!

There are many fat Pugs out there and this has many causes and consequences that can make them pay the ultimate price.

Part of the reason is that Pugs are perceived as naturally overweight – they aren’t, they should be muscular instead! This misconception makes them one of the most endangered breeds, as obesity aggravates their brachycephalic syndrome. Today, you’ll learn the most useful guidelines to keep your dog healthy safe weight at all times. Approach this task with a renewed confidence using our easy-to-follow tailored tips and guides. Let’s get right into it!

“The Association for Pet Obesity Prevention reports that nearly half the nation’s pets are classified as overweight or obese by a veterinary health care provider, including 43 percent of dogs and 53 percent of cats. As with humans, obese pets are at risk for heart problems, diabetes, and joint and hip difficulties.”

AVMA – American Veterinary Medical Association

There are many fat pugs out there and this has many causes and consequences that can make them pay the ultimate price. Pugs are perceived as naturally bulky, which they sort of are, though this doesn’t mean that being overweight doesn’t affect them. In fact, they are among the most endangered breeds because of this issue since it aggravates their already existing condition; brachycephalic syndrome. However, you need to know that this issue has a solution that’s fairly easy to apply once you know what the causes are!

Fat Pugs Causes: why Pugs get overweight?

Many things can cause your Pug to gain fat. However, this issue is often caused by owners that don’t know their Pug’s feeding and exercise needs. The main reasons are:

Reason # 1 – Overfeeding

We know that Pugs love to eat and that they are not picky at all. They can eat just about anything you give them. Still, this problem is not overeating – it’s the dog’s nature. For instance, if you accidentally leave a food bag within their reach, they’ll eat it non-stop until collapsing.

You can’t change their nature, and if you try, you can’t blame them for failing either! Instead, don’t overfeed them so they don’t indulge in food carelessly.

This includes not feeding him human food. Want to know how to make your pug stop begging?

Reason # 2 – Wrong diet

Pugs need to be nourished, not just fed. Not all dog foods out there are good for Pugs since they can have messed up macronutrients that will get them fat eventually.

You need to pick a recipe that keeps him well fed, energized, and that has the right amount of fat, carbohydrates, protein, and others to keep him lean.

Find here the best food for Pug puppies, adult Pugs, and for Pug’s weight loss.

Reason # 3 – No exercise

Pugs have special needs regarding exercise because of their brachycephalic needs. This doesn’t mean they can’t exercise but instead means that they need a specialized type of exercise with added safety measures to avoid overheating and other issues.

Reason # 4 – Seniority

Golden year Pugs have even more special needs. They have a slower metabolism and lower energy levels (plus, they can be grumpy). That means you’ll need to feed them with fewer calories and better food with low fat and low protein.

For that, check out our selection of food for Pugs for weight control and food for senior Pugs. The only good thing about those causes is that all of them are controlled by you! If you make some twists in your dog’s routine, you’ll see the changes after a while.

fat pug

Fat Pugs Consequences: Pug health problems

There are many consequences and Pug health issues related to obesity. In fact, obesity is one of the top risks for Pugs throughout their lives since it aggravates many other conditions that Pugs are prone to suffer:

# 1 – Brachycephalic syndrome

Brachycephalic syndrome is comparable to asthma, which means it is difficult for Pugs to breathe.

Putting on some pounds is the worst thing that can happen to a Pug (and any brachycephalic breed) because it makes it even harder for them to breathe.

They get tired faster and are more prone to suffer heat stress (especially during summer or in hot weather).

# 2 – Heatstroke

If heat stress is possible, it also is heatstroke. It’s caused when dogs can’t regulate their own temperature to cool down. Pugs have a hard time doing this naturally. Fat Pugs don’t even have a fighting chance!

# 3 – Joint overexertion

More weight on the joints equals long-term damage. Pugs need to stay lean since they are already prone to bone issues and hip dysplasia. Nutrition also has a huge role in this one.

# 4 – Diabetes

Pugs are slightly more prone than other dogs to diabetes mellitus due to being prone to obesity.

This health concern causes them to not regulate their metabolism and blood sugars, thus they’ll need insulin injections daily. A poor diet and obesity can worsen the risk.

# 5 – Brachycephalic syndrome

This one is related to diabetes and is often caused by it.

# 6 – Heart problems and high blood pressure

These issues are related to obesity and lack of exercise, just like in humans.

# 7 – Diminished lifespan

After these troubles, it’s only logical that the life expectancy of Pugs is a watered-down version of what it should be. On average, obesity takes at least 2 years out of your Pug’s life. Also, the quality of life is lower.

What is a Healthy Weight for my Pug? Is my Pug Overweight?

A healthy weight for pugs (on average) is something between 18 to 22 pounds. However, since pugs vary in size, this is not the most accurate measurement method. Small pugs can weigh in about 15 pounds and be rather big, and others can be 22 pounds and be skinny. Another thing to take into account is that male pugs are at least 10% heavier than female pugs.

You probable have a fat Pug if:

  • Your Pug gets tired faster than he used to when he was a puppy.
  • He has breathing issues even when he’s resting.
  • He looks like a barrel! Pugs are muscular and lean when they look as they should. Otherwise, they will look like tired little snoring barrels.

The best way of actually knowing how much your pug should weigh is by checking at the vet!

Pug Weight Calculator

Pug weight calculators are based mostly on charts. The most accepted informal (without a vet) method is the BCS chart (Body Condition Score).

With this method, all you have to do is make a simple comparison between some images and poke your Pug around. Here’s how to do it:

Step # 1 – Feel their ribs

First, feel their ribs right beside their chest. You should rather easily feel the ribcage and count the ribs through a thin but cushiony fat layer. If you need to push your fingers, too much fat covers your Pug, meaning they’re overweight.

Step # 2 – Visually assess them

After the first step, you need to look at your Pug from above and sideways and pay special attention to his waist.

  • From above, you should see a difference between your Pug’s waist and the rest of his body. It should look slightly like an 8, with a not so deep waistline. If he looks like a 0, then you’re both in trouble.
  • From the sides, you should be able to see that his chest and his waist/genital area are not in line. If it draws a straight line from waist to chest, that’s a harmful tummy!

If you can easily feel and even see the ribcage, your Pug looks like an 8 with a really thin waist from above, and looks like he has his tummy tucked in from the sides, then he’s likely to be under-weight! Especially if it’s an average-sized adult that weighs less than 15 pounds.

You can use our Pug’s BCS chart to get an idea of what you should be looking at! If you’re not sure about your Pug’s weight after measuring her/him like this, you can always go to the vet to double-check this information.

I got Fat Pugs. How to get a Pug to lose weight safely?

Convincing a Pug to lose weight safely is easier than you think! Playtime/exercise, treats, the right meals scheduled through the day, and some consistency is all you need. Let’s start!

Step # 1 – Playtime/exercise with an obese Pug

 If your Pug is obese, you’ll need to start playing and exercising daily. However, the key to exercise with a fat Pug is to pay attention to your Pug’s needs before, while, and after exercising.

Other considerations to keep in mind are:

  • Keep your Pug well-hydrated always, so make sure to take cool water with you and that he drinks plenty before leaving home.
  • You must know how to identify signs of heat stress and let your Pug rest on time.
  • Exercising is best if you do it in the mornings or even at night.
  • If that’s not possible, follow the personal trainer’s best advice: the best time for exercise is whenever you can do it – just take the right safety measures.
  • Don’t start with running. A slow-paced 15-minute walk in the park will turn your obese Pug’s engines safely.
  • After that, you’ll want to increase the activity’s duration. Add at least 5 minutes more every third week until you reach 30 minutes and stay there until you see that your Pug is not as tired as he used to.
  • Don’t push him over the 30-min threshold, as this will likely make them overheat.
  • If you have the time, switch the dog’s routine to “do his business” inside the house and take him outside when he has potty needs. After that, take a 5-minute walk around and get back inside. If you do this every time he hits the bathroom, you’ll be adding at least 10 minutes or more of walking time to his daily routine!
  • Finally, make sure to keep him busy and entertained most of the day, or at least twice per day. This will keep them at a healthy weight easily!

Do that for at least 2 months in a row before doing something harder, like playing tug of war or fetch. Find the best toys for Pugs here!

overweight pug

Step # 2 – Treats and food for Fat Pugs

Food for obese pugs needs to be low fat, rather high in protein, and with fiber to aid digestion.

This also depends on your pug’s metabolic needs, which varies a lot throughout your pug’s life.

“Geriatric pets often need foods that are more readily digested, and have different calorie levels and ingredients and anti-aging nutrients.”

AVMA – American Veterinary Medical Association

Treats are important for many reasons.

  • They keep your Pug filled (without putting on the pounds).
  • Helps Pugs to avoid begging (and you falling into the trap).
  • They are the best training aid for Pugs!

However, not all treats are Pug-friendly. The best treats for Pugs are low fat, low carbs, and low calories overall.

The flavor is also an important part of the deal, as well as keeping allergies under control, and free of harmful ingredients. Find the best treats you can get for your Pug here!

Pug Feeding Chart

Feeding a Pug is easy; resisting the urge to overfeed a Pug is the hard part, especially if they start begging.

If you can resist the begging or you managed to stop your Pug from begging with our helpful guide, then feeding him is easy!

Depending on the food you chose for them and their needs, you can cross-reference them with this Pug feeding chart. It’s very accurate, even though it seems to be like if you’re not feeding him enough.

Keep in mind that a pound of high-quality nutritious food is much better than the same pound of food with fillers and unknown ingredients!

Pug losing weight: How fast is safe? NO crash diet!

This depends on how fat your Pug is and how important is for him to lose weight. He can lose up to 1.5 pounds per month safely. This can be achieved with a good daily routine and very low calories. Plus, a homemade food recipe with high-quality natural ingredients is mandatory for these cases.

If the Pug weighs close to 40 pounds (twice his standard weight!), he’ll lose weight much faster. He can drop up to 5 pounds per month on average while still being relatively safe.

However, if it’s not vital for him to lose this weight, then it’s safer to take the long path of 0.5 to 1 pound per month with consistent exercise and diet. This is much easier, and it can be achieved with your Pug’s favorite commercial dog foods.

Healthy Routine to Maintain my Pug’s weight

“Walking helps preserve your pet’s muscle tone and joint movement. If your pet is overweight or obese, walking can be a great way to shed those extra pounds.”

“Walking helps preserve your pet’s muscle tone and joint movement. If your pet is overweight or obese, walking can be a great way to shed those extra pounds.”

AVMA – American Veterinary Medical Association

A healthy daily routine is crucial to maintain a Pug’s weight. You must know that the routine could vary depending on your Pug’s specific needs. Still, it should look a little bit like this:

Step # 1 – Waking up early

Feed the dog and go for a 15-minute walk early in the morning. The cooler temperatures of the morning make the task of walking easier for them.

They will probably hit the potty outside, so you can save yourself from some house cleaning. Take some water with you and make sure to leave it available for him upon returning home.

Step # 2 – Ignore begging!

Keep him away while you eat or ignore his begging. Make it easier with this guide.

Step # 3 – Keep them active and fed through the day

In the afternoon, at about 2 pm, it’s playtime. You can play with him a little bit indoors or outdoors for about 10 to 20 min, depending on your favorite game.

After that, give him the treat to fend off his munchies. You can take advantage of this time to do some grooming since this can be rather demanding for them.

Step # 4 – Night walks

At about 5, 6, or even 7 pm, feed him and take him for a 20 min walk outside. Again, make sure to bring some water to keep your Pug hydrated.

A routine like this will keep him active for about an hour a day in total, which is enough for a Pug. Take into account that you should feed him twice a day with appropriate servings for his size and weight each time.

That along with healthy treats should keep him lean always, and help him lose weight if he’s too fat. If your Pug is active inside the house after that, you might want to feed him with a serving amount for active adult Pugs. Make sure to check our food selection for a much more effective approach to diets!

frequently asked questions pugs dog breed

Frequently Asked Questions – Fat Pugs

How to keep my senior Pug lean?

To keep an old Pug lean is harder than with young ones because of their lower energy levels. That’s why keeping them lean is mostly about their diet.
You’ll need to get the proper food for Senior Pugs. Also, it’s much easier if you start making them lose weight before they reach seniority (when they’re about 5 years).

My Pug has arthritis. What can I do to keep him lean?

Even though some Pugs have arthritis, this doesn’t mean they can’t exercise. The best way of doing it? Take him swimming!
Swimming is one of the best low-impact exercises for dogs with arthritis. It’s easy on their joints and most of them like it. Make sure to supervise him. Also, warming up with a brisk walk of 10 minutes is advised.
If not, taking him on regular 10-minute walks three times per day and controlling their diet will help.

How to keep a Pug with heart issues lean?

This is a very special case where you’ll need to rely only on nutrition. Get holistic dog food and specialized low-fat and low-calorie treats.
You should also check with your vet if you can go for slow-paced walks outside without risks. No rushing though!

Are female Pugs more prone to being overweight?

Usually, female Pugs will put on some weight naturally during their heats and pregnancy due to hormonal changes. This doesn’t mean they’re prone to obesity.
Still, keeping an eye on their feeding and exercise routines is also vital and highly recommended.

Conclusion – Overweight Pugs

If you made it this far, you should have a better understanding of Pug’s diets and exercise schedules. Keep in mind that these routines are not only for Fat Pugs. Instead, they’re excellent to keep all Pugs active, lean, muscular, and healthy at all times, which is vital.

If you keep up with these tips and practices, your Pug will have the advantage to reach seniority with sound help.

Taking into account that they can live up to 15 years, and that seniority starts after 6 years of age, Pugs spend most of their lives being senior dogs!

That’s why preparing them for a healthy and rather active senior life by helping them maintain a healthy weight throughout their lives is so important. Are you doing this correctly? Is your Pug lean and active?